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Gene’s Daily Scriptural Postings.

Reflective Bible Study.

Year in Mark – Finale: Part 1

Listen to this episode and/or subscribe on in Mark – Finale: In the first part of our annual two-part finale, discover some of the biggest insights we discovered during the first half of this past year moving through the gospel of Mark. Read the transcript: Before I forget to say it because there is so much else to share, let me wish you a Merry Christmas. As we do at the end of every year to wrap up what we have been focusing in on, we take a couple of episodes to review the year we just finished and look back at some of the biggest and most profound insights during our year of podcasting. This year, we get to look back at the time we spent in Mark’s gospel. While we do this together for these podcasts, I believe the Christmas season is a great time to step back and thank God for everything He has blessed our lives with during our calendar year that is coming to a close. Whether you are looking forward to the new year because this past one was horrible, or if you are struggling to find something redeemable about the year we are ending, be thankful that God has still given you life and breath and give praise to God even if life has been hard. As we look back on our year focusing on Mark’s gospel, we’ve learned quite a bit. Starting with our first episode looking at how Mark opened his gospel sharing about Jesus’ baptism, we discovered that when Mark describes Jesus’ baptism, we see an amazing picture that this baptism wasn’t just with water like John’s previous baptisms. Instead, Jesus’ baptism was with both water and with the Holy Spirit at the start of His ministry, and when Jesus received the Holy Spirit at the beginning of His ministry, this sets the stage for Jesus to be able to baptize others with the Spirit. After Jesus received the Holy Spirit at His baptism, Jesus lets the Holy Spirit take the lead and direct Him where to go from that point forward. When we are letting God’s Holy Spirit lead us, we may be led to places that are not comfortable, and when we are in the places God’s Spirit leads us, we can expect to be tempted. Jumping ahead to episode number 3, where we looked at Jesus healing Simon’s mother-in-law, we learned that God wants to help us because that is who God is, not because God wants more servants. If God wanted servants, He could have created millions and billions of perfect servant robots who would have no freedom of choice. God gifted His creation with the gift of choice because love requires the freedom of choice for it to mean anything – and this tells us that God loves us more than we can imagine! Moving forward to episode number 7, where the religious leaders make the claim that Jesus used Satan’s power to cast out demons, we analyzed this argument and concluded that helping Jesus give glory to God would run counter to Satan’s character. Regardless of whether Jesus received Satan’s power or God’s power, either way dooms Satan’s kingdom. Either Satan fights himself and destroys his own kingdom, or Jesus really is more powe